Sunday, September 16, 2012

Butterscotch Banana Cream Pie


Am I the only person who buys bananas and never manage to get them eaten before they turn brown?
It doesn't seem to matter if I buy 3 or 6, I always end up with at least one that I'm scrambling to use rather than throw it away.  Today, I have 4, so I thought first of banana cream pie, then had the idea of combining the bananas with butterscotch cream  Doesn't that sound yummy?

Early this morning I started making the filling so it would have plenty of time to chill.  Well as luck would have it, I paused from my diligent stirring while the mixture was heating on the stove, just mere moments, while I instant messaged a friend.  In those moments disaster happened....yup, it burned on the bottom.  I strained it to get out the burned bits, but the taste test sealed the deal.  I had to dump it and start over.
The do-over went much better, but it did require a trip to the store.  While I was traveling down the baking isle at the grocery, I spied some Nestles Butterscotch Chips.  Hum....I thought as I put a bag in my cart.  I've made chocolate ganache with semi-sweet chips, I bet that same technique would work with butterscotch.  The plan is in place.  A layer of exquisite butterscotch ganache sitting on a flaky pastry crust, above it, layers of bananas and butterscotch cream topped off with a glorious crown of Italian Meringue.  Shameless?  Maybe, but there were bananas to save....you've gotta dream big!

Butterscotch Banana Cream Pie

Ingredients:

Filling:

1 1/2 cups brown sugar
6 Tablespoons flour
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups milk
6 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 Tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 medium sized ripe bananas, sliced 1/4 inch thick

Pie Crust:

2 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup lard (you can use 3/4 cup Crisco instead)
4-5 Tablespoons cold water

Butterscotch Ganache:

1 1/4 cups Nestles butterscotch chips
6 Tablespoons heavy cream (whipping cream)
1 Tablespoon butter

Directions:

First let's start with the pie filling.
In a large, heavy bottomed pan, mix together the brown sugar, flour, cornstarch, salt, milk and egg yolks until well blended.  Set aside the egg white in a clean bowl and cover them for use in the meringue later.

Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is thick and smooth. This will take approximately 7-10 minutes.  Be sure to stir constantly otherwise you might burn the filling.  Once the mixture is pudding thickness, remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla and butter.

Pour the cooked mixture into a bowl, cover the surface of the pudding with plastic wrap and refrigerate until completely cooled.  Note:  The plastic wrap on the surface of the pudding will prevent it from getting a film on the top.

Once the filling is in the fridge, we'll get started on the pie crust.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

The recipe calls for lard.  If you have it or aren't opposed to using it, do.  It makes for a wonderful crust.
The pie crust ingredients will yield sufficient crust for a normal two crust pie.  I have a deep dish pie plate I am using and it requires more crust than a one-crust recipe, so I'll have leftovers and I'll share what I do with that at the end!

First, fill a cup of water with ice cubes and add water and set it aside.  This will have you sufficiently cold water when it's time for that step.

Mix the flour and salt in a medium sized mixing bowl.  Add the lard (Crisco) and cut it in with a pastry blender until the mixture is the consistency of coarse cornmeal or tiny peas.  Sprinkle on the cold water 1 Tablespoon at a time, tossing the mixture with a fork after each addition.  The dough should be just moist enough to hold together.  This is something that you just have to judge, it never seems to take the same amount of water.  For example, today I ended up using 7 Tablespoons of water.

Use 1/2 the dough, shaping it into a ball and rolling it on a floured board.  Flatten the dough slightly and roll it lightly from the center in all directions until the dough is approximately 1/8 inch thick.  Fold the dough lightly in half and transfer it to your pie plate.  Trim and crimp the edges and since we want this to be a baked shell, generously prick the sides and bottom with the tines of a  fork to prevent the shell from getting air bubbles.
Bake in a preheated 450 degree F oven for 10-15 minutes.  Cool on a baking rack.  Wrap the remaining dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for later use or.....

Roll out the remaining crust to 1/8th inch thickness.  Smear it with softened butter and sprinkle generously with granulated sugar and cinnamon.  Fold in half, crimp the edges.  Transfer the dough to a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Bake in the 450 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.  We called it Johnny Cake when I was growing up and it is the reason I almost always make more pie crust dough than I need!

Once the crust and filling are cool, let's make the ganache and start the assembly.

Place the butterscotch chips into a small heat proof bowl and set it aside.
In a small pan, heat the heavy cream and butte over medium heat.  When the sides start to bubble, remove the cream from the heat and pour it over the top of the butterscotch chips.
Let it stand for 2 minutes....it's tempting to mess with it, but trust me and wait.
After 2 minutes. Whisk the mixture until it is smooth.  It will look awful, but keep whisking and it will turn into a wonderful silky smoothness.. Spread the ganache evenly over the pie crust then place in refrigerator.

Just a few more steps and we will be done....
I know this seems long and a lot of trouble but the end result is so luscious you'll be glad you spent the time.

Gather your ganache lined pie crust, your filling and the bananas.
Let's assemble the pie:

Peel and slice the bananas into 1/4 inch slices.  Make a layer of banana slices on the ganache.
Add 1/2 the butterscotch filling, spreading it evenly over the bananas.
Add another layer of bananas and top it with the remaining filling. spreading evenly to cover.

Now we need make the Italian Meringue for the pie's crowning glory.

Remember those egg whites....now is the time to find them.

Italian Meringue:

6 egg whites, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup of superfine white sugar
1/3 cup water

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a small heavy bottom saucepan, over medium heat combine the water and sugar.  Swirl the pot over the burner to dissolve the sugar completely.  Do not stir.  
Increase the heat and boil to soft-ball stage (235-240 degrees F).  Be sure to use a candy thermometer for accuracy.  During the cooking process, dip a pastry brush in water and wash down the sides to keep the sugar crystals from forming and causing your mixture to turn into a lump of sugar.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, whip the egg whites on low speed until frothy.  Add the cream of tartar, increase the speed to medium and continue beating until soft peaks form.  Do not beat them too long or you will end up with a very dry meringue which is hard to spread and not have the smooth glossy texture (which is what I did today).


 With the mixer running, pour the hot sugar syrup in a thin stream over the fluffed egg whites.  Beat until the egg whites are stiff and glossy.

Spread the meringue over the pie, making sure you do not leave any gaps between the meringue and the pie crust.

Place in the preheated oven and bake until the meringue turns a lovely golden brown.  This will take between 12 and 15 minutes.  


Cool the pie on a wire rack and refrigerate.

.....and that's What's Cooking at Cathy's ~ Enjoy!

No comments:

Post a Comment

About Me

My photo

My career is in IT.  Cooking and photography are among a few of my hobbies. In my spare time, which is most weekends I tie on my apron and exercise my creativity by trying new recipes and adapting them to my tastes. I also have a passion for photography that I incorporate by taking photographs to go along with the recipes I post on my blog.  
I also enjoy travel, both near and abroad. Meeting new people, new experiences and cultures and oh, not to mention the food! I hope you enjoy my blog.